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Handmade Bunting

I sewed a nine foot long bunting!

Hand sewn bunting

It was quick and fun to sew!


Plus I got to use all these cool and colorful fabrics that I bought in very small amounts when I first started sewing.

Rusted Thread

Buntings are so versatile and surprisingly quick to make.  I see lots more in my future.  Can’t you just see a fabulous indigo cotton bunting?

Hand sewn Bunting

It’s for Miranda Beyer!  Go to her blog to check out her photos and hopefully one day, you’ll see this bunting in the background.

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It’s awesome. Oops.

First, the results of the avocado dyed pieces.


On the right, a dish towel that was in the dye bath for 24 hours.  On the left. a cotton napkin that was in for 48 hours.  The color  on the napkin is darker but also very uneven and I am not thrilled with it.  You can kind of see the darker part along the top.  And the silk scarf, up above them both, was in until the water got nasty – maybe three days-ish.  It’s “meh”.  But it was when I bought it, too.  I just wanted to play with silk.  I have a pile of avocado skins and pits growing in my freezer because, although it’s very light, the pink is really lovely on the 24 hour piece.  I want to do more!


In the meantime, this quilt needs a backing.  I decided to go all linen for this quilt.  I’ve never done that before but I can just imagine how delightful it would feel to be wrapped up in it.  I  thought it would be fun to piece the back, too.  Another first.  Big beige pieces, though, because I want the blue side to be the star.


I really screwed up on this one.  Because crazy piecing fabric together is one of my favorite things to do, it’s neither made of large pieces nor less interesting than the blue side.


It’s awesome.  Oops.


I had to force myself to keep these big and plain.


It goes way faster but is it worth it?  The next challenge will be to find a way to enjoy sewing them all up and not going overboard.

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Rocking Dyeing


Are you tired of indigo pictures yet?  Because I’m not done.  Here are some experimentally tied up flour sack towels.


I’m late to jump on the flour sack towel wagon.  I had never heard of them but they rock.

They’re very absorbent so great to dye and to dry messes, too.


This is Janet, she kept me company.


I had to wake the dye vat up, it was a couple  of weeks old.  I added boiling water and soda ash and got this fabulous sickening yellow-green.  That’s what it’s supposed to look like.


Here I was trying to get a picture of how the dye didn’t read some of the fabric touching the bottle.  This is my favorite technique, just wait till I show you the result.


This one, I folded into eighths the long way and then put rubber bands around it.  I’m kinda “meh” on it, too much white.


While this has lots of white too, I love it.  I folded it about into triangles and then put rubber bands around it.


 I know I took a picture of this whole napkin but I can’t find it so here’s a corner.  I just dyed a solid blue.


This on I used a rectangle on one side and a gear shape on the other.  I love it.


This scarf is the bane of my existence.  Just sayin’.  It’s my third time trying to dye it in a way that makes me happy.  I love the design but silk just doesn’t take dye the same way as cotton.  Actually, I shouldn’t be so mad at it.  I’ll just keep trying and next thing you know, I’ll be rocking dyeing silk with indigo.


Tada!  My favorite.  This one was tied around the bottle.  I love it!


 A fine afternoon.  Plus, I painted some random colors onto the chicken coop while waiting for the indigo to cure.

I plan on just adding colors to the coop whenever I feel like it.  That way I won’t be painting the inside of my house all different colors (which I’ve always wanted to do but never have for my family’s sake) and everyone is happy.

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Turned Into Biology


The science switched today, well, probably yesterday.  What started out as chemistry (which is what dyeing really is) turned into biology.


I tried to get a close up of the life I, not unlike Dr. Frankenstein, created.  This life, probably a lot like the Frankenstein monster, stank like hell.  So, I gave up on this as a long term project.  It had been sitting outside for about four days.


After a rinse, the silk scarf still only picked up a light pink.

It’s waiting to go through the wash now.   I’ve read that I should be washing all of my naturally dyed fabrics by hand and drying them on a line.  Maybe one day I will.  For now, I want to see how they tolerate a heavy duty washing.

In the meantime, I’ve started another collection of avocado skins and pits so I can try it again.  This was really fun.  If you try out dyeing with avocado skins because you saw this post, please let me know how it goes.  It’s really fascinating to me.


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Guess What



It’s my napkin!  It soaked in the avocado skin and pit dye bath for 48 hours.


Ok, it’s wet and the other one is dry but I still think it’s darker and will stay that way.


I still have all this avocado skin…juice?


Guess what, just about everything I own is already blue!  But not this silk scarf.


So I threw it in the jar.  Imma leave it in there as long as I can stand it.   And  yes, I left the napkin on the jar for the picture this time.

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Only Slightly Daunted

The other day, I let some avocado skins and pits simmer for a few hours on my stove.


Yesterday, I played with them.  First, check out my awesome jar.  I don’t usually buy jars without lids but this one was so large and impressive that it came home with me.

I knew I’d find a use for it.


I reheated the witch’s brew this morning and strained out the big pieces. It smelled of avocados.

I was really struck by how very red it was.

The light in my kitchen isn’t great so I guess you’ll have to take my word for it.


I decided to experiment on one thrifted cotton napkin and one flour sack dish towel.

I thought about using some resist techniques but the rubber bands weren’t right in front of me so I didn’t.

I will next time.


I used an old tee-shirt made into a rag to strain the little bits out.


That went well BUT


I knocked it over and spilled half the water – D’oh!  I’m so glad I was working in the sink.


I still managed to christen my counter and back splash.


So only slightly daunted – I always expect some kind of mistake will be made at some point – I kept going.



They got very pink right away – this is right after I shoved them in there.


I left the jar out in front my house – keeping the rosemary company – to catch the afternoon sun.

I put a napkin over the top but it didn’t look nice so it’s not in the picture.  I used that skewer to move the fabric around a couple time during the day, just to make sure it all got equal time in the dye bath.  I left the jar out till the early evening cool down.


It was toasty warm when I brought it in.


It was hard to get a good shot of the flour sack towel when I took it out.  It wasn’t this orange-y – that’s just a reflection of my orange kitchen walls and my bad lighting.


But this picture seems pretty accurate.  It lost a ton of color when I rinsed it but it’s still a very pretty pale pink.  I left the napkin in the jar.  I’ll let it soak another 24 hours to see what happens.  I used about 8 – 10 avocado skins and probably 4 – 5 pits.  That’s more than most of the tutorials I looked at so I was expecting more color.  Live and learn.

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Altered, Vague, Slippy Slidey Thought Space

I picked my color to finish this quilt totally unconsciously.  After taking pictures of my options,

I put the grey linen pants in a pile all by themselves without even realizing it.  Everything else was stacked on a chair together.


 So, after publishing my blog post, having lunch, and bopping around my house doing the stuff I do, I came back to the quilt and I decided on the grey linen pants.  That’s when I saw that I has already separated them out from all the other fabric.  My unconscious mind makes better decisions than my conscious mind.


And then, since I was in that sort of altered, vague, slippy slidey thought space I get into when I make stuff (you do too, right?) I found myself going off into an internal rant.   Usually, my rants are totally in my head and don’t come out  to play because I’m in the middle of making something that needs my attention or I’m trying to get to sleep.  Usually trying to get to sleep. This one happened to happen near the laptop and I typed it out.  I would love to hear your thoughts about my thoughts.


They’re about those quilters who say they make a mistake on purpose because only God is perfect.  Why is that impressive?  For one, it sounds like they are saying the opposite of what they think they’re saying.  “I’m so good I have to purposely make a mistake so the shit I make isn’t utter perfection.”  Please!

The bigger point for me, though, is that if they have got quilting so down that they’re perfect; they are doing it wrong.  If anyone is just knocking out more perfection, it’s time to move on.  We are not machines, it’s a sign that’s it’s time to get a new freakin’ hobby.  We should be always learning, always striving for new ideas and stretching ourselves.  Making mistakes on purpose to see what happens.  Not because we’ve got such a big ego that we don’t think we can make mistakes unless we do it on purpose.

Life:  If you’re always doing everything right. you’re doing it wrong.

That’s a first for me:  A rant that ends with a tag line.


Moving on.


Doesn’t this look nasty?  It’s a pot of water and avocado skins and pits.  My evil plan is to simmer them for hours, strain the water into a jar, add a piece of fabric, put that out into the sun and see what happens.  I just bought myself Eco Colour by India Flint and I see more fun with the compost pile in my immediate future.  Stay tuned, I hear avocado skins dye things PINK!

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Thinking Out Loud On The Blog

Kayak trip cancelled due to perfect weather.


The forecast called for rain and the trip required earlier than normal waking.  So when I did finally wake up and saw the forecast was wrong, the weather was perfect and we cancelled the trip for no reason, it was too late to get moving.




But, looking on the positive side, I had some time to sit down and sew a bit.

I finally finished that last quilt top square.





Oh yes, you have to suffer through at least one gratuitous close up.

That’s how much fabric was left over.  Not much.

Which is another bummer because I need more fabric to make the squares all fit together.

WHY did I make those napkins when this fabric told me it wanted to be a quilt?!?!?!?!?

I do love my napkins, though.


Anyhoo, my lack of indigo dyed linen led to me making a bunch of silly looking piles of fabric under my smallest square to try and find something that worked.  This one is dyed light blue with indigo but has a print on it which might be distracting.



Linen lavender remnant of a jacket.  But also thicker than the other linen in the quilt.  Hmm.


A linen/cotton blend skirt.  Beige.


Olivey-brown linen pants.

Linen shirt.



Other pair of linen pants, grey.


Hmm.  I guess I’m just thinking out loud on the blog here.

I often get a different view of something after posting it here.

The extra fabric I pick will also show up here and there between squares to make them fit together.  I’ll let you know what I pick.  Either I make a point of it all being blue or I have another color peeking out here and there.


Win win, I’d say.


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She Caught Me

My life is changing.  Not in a bad way, at all.  I’m not done blogging either.

I just have to figure how it all will fit together.

I’ve been having tons of fun.  I’ve started a website for our business.  I’m actually really proud of it because I know NOTHING about coding.  It was very confusing and weird but it doesn’t look completely embarrassing.

There’s still more for me to do but at least it’s a start.

 Yesterday, my daughter and I went to a “Drawing Jam” run by Lynda Barry, who is amazing.

That’s her brain on the left and mine on the right.

It was a blast.  My daughter got to discuss her drawing with Lynda Barry,



Here she caught me taking her picture.

I STILL haven’t finished the last square of my quilt top but I’m close, just as close as I was last time I posted.  Today I finish our chicken coop, tomorrow I kayak.

 I just need time to sit down.  🙂


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